The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 38, July 1934 - April, 1935 Page: 6
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
The attorneys contended that defendants had bid four cents an
acre for the enclosed lands; that leases had been awarded by the
county surveyor; that lessees had "tendered the money for them
to the land board, and had kept up such tender yearly." Judge
Willis charged that if this defense was found true the jury
should render a verdict of "not guilty," and they forthwith ren-
dered their decision in accord.3
It was an amusing situation which the frontier enjoyed.
Woodman, appreciating it fully, took occasion to excoriate the
jurors for their decision. Addressing them individually he "ex-
pected no more" from old McFrogge and other cowboys. But
when he came to W. A. Allan, a sort of itinerant preacher then
running the White House, he took him to particular task:
"But Parson Allan, I am surprised at you. I had expected
more of you-a leader in the moral and spiritual life of your
community," and so kept on until Allan was thoroughly angry.
After the trial the cowboys "rigged the Parson up to whip
Woodman," for this manifest injustice, and he jumped on the
lawyer with a truly ministerial zeal. Woodman laughed him
down with the truth:
"Oh, bless your soul, Parson Allan. Don't you know that was
all for the Attorney General ?"4
In the meantime Goodnight had secured opinions from Ex-
Governor J. W. Throckmorton, Judge T. J. Brown, Silas Hare,
and Buck Walton that the action of the Board was insupport-
able by law. W. T. Gass, the grass commissioner, was buzzing
about the country in search of evidence and contending that
the tender of lease money had been made "for the purpose of
giving them [the cowmen] a supposed favorable standing in the
courts. . . " Significant at this time, and coincident with
the announcement of the unofficial opinions of this counsel was
Governor Ireland's letter which "fell like a bombshell on the
Board," suggesting they reduce the lease to four cents." Treasurer
Lubbock and Land Commissioner Swain were said to be weakening,
"See the Civil Record, as cited, 150-183, and the Gazette, January 25,
1886, quoting the Northwest Texan; Senate Journal, 1887, pp. 59, 93.
4T. D. Hobart to J. E. H., September 7, 1932.
"Goodnight to J. E. H., September 2, 1927; Fort Worth Gazette, Janu-
ary 6, and February 1, 1886; Galveston News, January 7, 1886.
'Fort Worth Gazette, January 7, 1886.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 38, July 1934 - April, 1935, periodical, 1935; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117143/m1/14/: accessed July 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.